Light and Crispy Chicken Parmesan

Ingredient List
28 oz.  can of Crushed Tomatoes
6-8 Chicken Thighs
Bay Leaf
Dried Basil
Dried Thyme
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Garlic Powder  or 2-3 Chopped Garlic Cloves
Grated Parmesan Cheese
Japanese Panko Crumbs (Regular or Whole Wheat)
Salt and Pepper

This recipe is comfort food and I love dressing my chicken parmesan with lots of tomato sauce and then more parmesan cheese.  So yummy!  This chicken parmesan uses Japanese panko crumbs instead of bread crumbs because panko is crispier and lighter.  There are no eggs in this recipe.  The binder is extra virgin olive oil.  I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my family does!

Begin by prepping the sauce: Light and Crispy Chicken Parmesan

  • Open a can of CRUSHED TOMATOES and gently put in a sauce pan
    • Drizzle EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL on top
    • Then add a spoonful, or about 1-2 tablespoons, of DRIED BASIL, DRIED THYME, and GARLIC POWDER (or chopped GARLIC CLOVES)
    • Add BAY LEAF
    • Add SALT and PEPPER to your preference
  • Stir all of the ingredients together
  • Turn the heat on medium high.
    • Once the sauce begins to release bubbles lower the heat to a simmer.
    • Cover with a lid and let the sauce simmer while you cook the remainder of the meal

Now it’s time to prepare the crust:

  • Using a mixing a bowl, fill it up with 2-3 cups of JAPANESE PANKO CRUMBS
    • The regular white bread version works fine.
    • I used a whole wheat version because that’s what was in my pantry.
  • Sprinkle SALT on the crumbs.
    • About a teaspoon or a good pinch full.
    • I recommend mixing the crumbs and salt together and then taste. Panko can be bland and needs a good amount of salt to make it more pleasant.
  • Add a handful (or two – haha!) of grated PARMESAN CHEESE
  • Add a tablespoon of DRIED BASIL and DRIED THYME
  • Mix all of the ingredients together

Rinse chicken thighs and dry with a paper towel:

  • Lay the CHICKEN THIGHS on a clean flat surface
  • Set the oven to 425° Fahrenheit
  • While the oven heats up, take 1 chicken thigh and coat it with EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL on both sides
  • I use extra virgin olive oil as the binder instead of egg wash
  • Then lay the chicken thigh flat in the Japanese panko mixture and cover with crumbs
  • Next, lay the chicken thigh into a non-stick oven tray with a rack
    • I like using a rack to avoid the crust on the bottom from getting too moist while baking in the oven
  • Repeat the coating process for all the pieces of chicken thighs
  • Bake the chicken for 25 minutes
    • While the chicken bakes I like to check on the sauce by stirring it, tasting it, and seeing if more herbs or salt need to be added
  • After the chicken bakes, pick one of the thighs as the “tester” and cut it to see if the center is pink.
    • The center should NOT be pink. Chicken is cooked through when it is white.

Serve chicken parmesan immediately.  Serve with tomato sauce on top, or on the side, and then garnish with more grated parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

 

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